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Thread: Post-International Space Station?

  1. #91
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    The question appears to have been answered. The ISS is about to become a tourist trap. No, seriously.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-48560874
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  2. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    The question appears to have been answered. The ISS is about to become a tourist trap. No, seriously.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-48560874
    Would they send paying customers when their American shuttle has hopefully just been approved for use!!!!
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  3. #93
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    The Space Review has a article that covers more then the paying customers..

    http://www.thespacereview.com/article/3731/1

    When NASA decided to announce its long-awaited new initiative to support commercial activities on the International Space Station and low Earth orbit, it eschewed NASA Headquarters or its other centers as the venue for its announcement. Instead, the agency went to New York City, holding the announcement at the Nasdaq exchange, a form of stage-setting to argue that the station was open for business.

    “Today is a very remarkable day,” Jeff DeWit, NASA’s chief financial officer, said at the briefing. “NASA is opening the International Space Station to commercial opportunities, and marketing these opportunities as we’ve never done before.”

    What the agency rolled out over the course of an hour was a multi-step approach to stimulating both the demand for facilities like the ISS as well as the supply of future commercial facilities that NASA hopes will one day succeed the station.
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  4. #94
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    And Popular Mechanics looks further into the future and looks at some concepts for space stations.

    https://www.popularmechanics.com/spa...space-station/

    NASA reopened the International Space Station to space tourists last week, prompting a flurry of media attention and geek exuberance. The focus is on the opportunity for space tourists to visit ISS, a $35,000-a-night excursion for customers, but the part of the announcement that received less attention will likely have a bigger long-term impact: newly relaxed rules for-profit research done in orbit.

    Projecting these trends into the future is the only way to see what may be enabled by these changes. Of course, predicting the future of spaceflight has been a fool’s errand and invites future readers to laugh with well-earned derision, but let’s hit fast forward to imagine the future of space stations 5 and 10 years into the future.

    All of the business activities mentioned are based on current efforts, in and out of NASA while some are only used as examples of what’s possible, and should not be taken as an endorsement (but we think they're cool).
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  5. #95
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    Looks like the USA will still have a space station after the ISS is decommissioned. Though it might be a military one.

    http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Pe...ation_999.html

    The Defense Innovation Unit of the Pentagon announced a call for ideas for a small, autonomous military space station this week.

    The "solicitation brief," known in civilian circles as a request for proposal, seeks "solutions for a self-contained and free flying orbital outpost. The solution must be capable of supporting space assembly, microgravity experimentation, logistics and storage, manufacturing, training, test and evaluation, hosting payloads, and other functions."

    It specifies no more than 35 cubic feet of available experimentation space, indicating it is inappropriate for human habitation. The craft must be able to move in its own orbit, be made of material conducive to low Earth orbit, and be ready for flight two years after a contractor is chosen, the brief stipulates.

    The space station would be scalable, or expandable, with the capability of carrying attachments, such as an exterior robotic arm, and eventually, human passengers. The brief does not specifically address the craft's purpose, but appears to be a space station exclusively for military purposes
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  6. #96
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    MOL won't die.

  7. #97
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    "NASA chief warns Congress about Chinese space station"

    https://www.spacedaily.com/reports/N...ation_999.html

    NASA chief Jim Bridenstine told lawmakers Wednesday it was crucial for the US to maintain a presence in Earth's orbit after the International Space Station is decommissioned so that China does not gain a strategic advantage.

    The first parts of the ISS were launched in 1998 and it has been continuously lived in since 2000.

    The station, which serves as a space science lab and is a partnership between the US, Russia, Japan, Europe and Canada, is currently expected to be operated until 2030.

    "I'll tell you one thing that has me very concerned -- and that is that a day is coming when the International Space Station comes to the end of its useful life," said Bridenstine.

    "In order to be able to have the United States of America have a presence in low Earth orbit, we have to be prepared for what comes next," he added.

    To that end, NASA has requested $150 million for the 2021 fiscal year to help develop the commercialization of low Earth orbit, defined as 2,000 km (1,200 miles) or less from the planet's surface.
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  8. #98
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    The air leak in the ISS has people looking at what comes, after the ISS is no more.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/techn...s-anniversary/

    But as the station continues to show its age, there is concern about what comes next and whether the United States will find itself in a position similar to 2011, when it retired its fleet of space shuttles without a backup ready. That left the space agency dependent on Russia to fly its astronauts to space until SpaceX ended an ignominious chapter earlier this year with the launch of its Crew Dragon spacecraft as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.

    Now the concern is that the station will one day need to come down — in what would be a carefully coordinated but spectacular crash into the ocean — before its successor is ready.
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  9. #99
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    Would it HAVE to come down all at once? Surely some modules are worth incorporating into a new station.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  10. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Would it HAVE to come down all at once? Surely some modules are worth incorporating into a new station.
    One of the options Russia was considering, was reusing some of their current modules in their own space station.
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  11. #101
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    NASA wants to leverage commercial station in LEO, starting they the AXIOM module at ISS then it becoming a free-flyer, and move their operations to cislunar and further space with the Gateway station. The recently signed Artemis Accords takes it international; US, UK, Canada, ESA, Italy, Luxembourg, Japan, Australia. UAE, etc.

    Don't giggle at Luxembourg; like the US they've enacted laws which are very friendly to space business startups. In the US the state of Deleware is the legal home of many incorporated businesses, and Luxembourg looks to fill that role internationally.

  12. #102
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    "A dynamic ISS prepares for its future, and its end"

    https://www.thespacereview.com/article/4061/1

    Twenty years ago today, the crew of Expedition 1—Bill Shepherd, Yuri Gidzenko, and Sergei Krikalev—arrived at the International Space Station, kicking off occupation of the station that has continued uninterrupted to this day. NASA and its partners have been celebrating this impending milestone for months, regularly remining the public that there is now a whole generation of people who have no memories of a time when there were not people in orbit.

    The milestone, though, is a reminder of something NASA and its partners are a little less eager to talk about: the ISS is closer to its end than to its beginning. While humans have been on the station for the last 20 years, it’s unlikely they will be there for 20 more years. At some point—perhaps a decade from now, or a little longer—the ISS will be retired and, most likely, deorbited.
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  13. #103
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    "NASA chief warns of gap after retirement of International Space Station"

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/11/1...space-station/

    The International Space Station is likely to continue operating for another decade, but without more government support, a privately-owned outpost may not be ready in time to replace it, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said.

    Bridenstine told Spaceflight Now he is concerned that a commercial space station may not be ready by the time the International Space Station reaches the end of its life.

    While NASA focuses more resources on a return of astronauts to the moon, and eventually human expeditions to Mars, the space agency still wants to send experiments and crews into low Earth orbit to test out technologies for deep space exploration and perform other research investigations.

    Instead of owning and operating a space station itself, the government wants to lease accommodations on a commercial outpost in orbit.

    “Under no circumstances should we have a gap in low Earth orbit,” Bridenstine in an interview. “We’ve been asking Congress to fund the development of commercial habitation in low Earth orbit now for a number of years. And every year … Congress doesn’t fund it.
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  14. #104
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    "NASA wants companies to develop and build new space stations, with up to $400 million up for grabs"

    https://www.cnbc.com/2021/03/27/nasa...-stations.html

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration last year marked two decades of astronauts continuously onboard the International Space Station. But, as the floating research laboratory ages, the space agency is turning to private companies to build and deploy new free flying habitats in low Earth orbit.

    NASA this past week unveiled the Commercial LEO Destinations (CLD) project, with plans to award up to $400 million in total to as many as four companies in the fourth quarter of 2021 to begin development on private space stations.
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  15. #105
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    These companies responded to the NASA CLD solicitation.

    Seeing SpaceX is no surprise. Notable absence: Bigelow Aerospace.

    SpaceX could, of course, provide transportation but Starship could be a returnable laboratory on its own. If return isn't an issue, such as docking several to a node, Starship HLS (lunar) has the nose docking port and dual airlocks with a common suit prep room. Extra*points if there are ways to open the upper and common domes to create more volume (a "wet workshop").

    Screenshot_20210327-172855.jpg

    https://twitter.com/SotirisG5/status...67855183429632

  16. #106
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    I guess it is time for the ISS era to end. Everything began when the air started to leak. In October, cosmonauts Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Wagner, using tea leaves, discovered a crack 4.5 centimeters long.

  17. #107
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    "Nevada company plans space station with inflatable pods"

    https://www.spacedaily.com/reports/N..._pods_999.html

    Nevada-based Sierra Nevada Corp. plans to launch a commercial space station with inflatable human habitats within seven years, the company announced in a press conference Wednesday.

    Sierra Nevada already has seven NASA contracts to launch its Dream Chaser spaceplane, which is being developed to fly cargo to the International Space Station starting in 2022.

    Now, the firm said it aims to have its own orbiting habitat in space before NASA retires the space station around 2028.
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  18. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    The question appears to have been answered. The ISS is about to become a tourist trap. No, seriously.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-48560874
    Based on the Soyuz experience, it seems the market is pretty thin, at least at the prices they have been offering (tens of millions).

    The article mentions $35,000 per night, which by comparison is quite reasonable (you can probably find hotels on earth that cost that much), but scrolling down a bit, they refer to $60 million to get there. ("per flight" - not clear if that is also "per passenger", or if that's the cost for all the passengers on a particular flight.)

    If the cost remains in the tens of millions, it seems destined to be a very niche business. I think Soyuz has had eight paying customers, including one repeat? Now I know there are capacity constraints, but I haven't heard that there is a long waiting list full of people waiting to pay tens of millions to fly.
    So . . . does this look as bad as it looks?

  19. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    Based on the Soyuz experience, it seems the market is pretty thin, at least at the prices they have been offering (tens of millions).
    It is likely that prices will fall as technology - including reusable rockets - improves. I have put the posts below on the economic issues in The Emerging Space Economy thread

    https://forum.cosmoquest.org/showthr...70#post2527970

    https://forum.cosmoquest.org/showthr...30#post2530830
    Last edited by DavidLondon; 2021-Apr-01 at 10:26 PM.

  20. #110
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    "NASA revises its low Earth orbit commercialization plans"

    https://www.thespacereview.com/article/4152/1

    In June of 2019, NASA rolled out its new low Earth orbit commercialization initiative, an effort to build up both the supply of commercial capabilities in LEO as well as demand for them outside of NASA (see “NASA tries to commercialize the ISS, again”, The Space Review, June 10, 2019.) That initiative features several elements, from setting aside a fraction of International Space Station resources for commercial activities and allowing private astronaut missions to starting the process of supporting both commercial ISS modules and standalone commercial stations that could, eventually, succeed the ISS.

    NASA’s progress on that initiative has been uneven. It has had some successes, notably with its competition to offer a port on the station for a commercial module. The agency selected Axiom Space in January 2020 to use that port, and the company has since been working both on that module as well as fundraising. In February, the company raised $130 million to support continued development of that module, which will form the core of a commercial segment of the station and, eventually, a standalone station.

    Axiom also secured the first private astronaut mission under that NASA program, called Ax-1 and scheduled to launch to the station early next year (see “The new era of private human orbital spaceflight”, The Space Review, March 8, 2021.) It will fly three customers to the ISS on a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft commanded by a former NASA astronaut, Michael López-Alegría. In an interview around the time the company raised its new round, CEO Michael Suffredini said it had more such missions “in the hopper” for the next couple of years, pending NASA approval.
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  21. #111
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    Proposed buildings and structures come from many groups Bigelow Aerospace https://spacenews.com/bigelow-aerosp...ercial-module/ Axiom Space https://www.geekwire.com/2020/nasa-c...-boeings-help/ Musk has talked of a Mars bound Starship https://www.marssociety.org/videos/e...al-convention/ Chinese have many plans, their society and news isnt as open as the United States but they have ambitions. https://www.inverse.com/article/6104...-big-milestone Russia I believe at times has stated it would build a new station or would separate its ISS modules in 2024 to form the basis of a new Russian national space station. One name I have seen is 'Ross' and news reports on how Russia wants to develop a Russian Orbital Service Station (ROSS) with an 'unlimited lifespan' https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencet...-end-life.html I have seen European plans and proposals but I think they are mostly un-funded dreams with no manned flight. I have seen plans for reusable vehicles, hoppers, other test vehicles satellite service, transport etc They have plans for the Soyuz in S.America and the Ariane family, there is also Themis with Prometheus engines, plans for demonstration of a reusable rocket / launch vehicle but ESA will probably continue its current path with Robotic Exploration and Orbital Robotic Stations. Europe has a proposed orbital mission to Venus and Xray Gamma energy telescope, Earth monitoring mapping Earth science experiments on stations but I do not see any real manned Space habitat or manned spaceflight from Europe, they are of course already involved in manned flight but do it in partnership with others.

  22. #112
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    List of Space Habitat proposals

    Quote Originally Posted by Launch window View Post
    Proposed buildings and structures come from many groups Bigelow Aerospace https://spacenews.com/bigelow-aerosp...ercial-module/ Axiom Space https://www.geekwire.com/2020/nasa-c...-boeings-help/ Musk has talked of a Mars bound Starship https://www.marssociety.org/videos/e...al-convention/ Chinese have many plans, their society and news isnt as open as the United States but they have ambitions. https://www.inverse.com/article/6104...-big-milestone Russia I believe at times has stated it would build a new station or would separate its ISS modules in 2024 to form the basis of a new Russian national space station. One name I have seen is 'Ross' and news reports on how Russia wants to develop a Russian Orbital Service Station (ROSS) with an 'unlimited lifespan' https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencet...-end-life.html I have seen European plans and proposals but I think they are mostly un-funded dreams with no manned flight. I have seen plans for reusable vehicles, hoppers, other test vehicles satellite service, transport etc They have plans for the Soyuz in S.America and the Ariane family, there is also Themis with Prometheus engines, plans for demonstration of a reusable rocket / launch vehicle but ESA will probably continue its current path with Robotic Exploration and Orbital Robotic Stations. Europe has a proposed orbital mission to Venus and Xray Gamma energy telescope, Earth monitoring mapping Earth science experiments on stations but I do not see any real manned Space habitat or manned spaceflight from Europe, they are of course already involved in manned flight but do it in partnership with others.
    Thanks Launch Window. A useful pulling together of articles on different proposals for space habitats.

    It motivates me to ask whether there is a comprehensive list of space habitat projects in the pipeline post ISS anywhere.
    Having not (yet!) found one I suggest we have a go at listing them, into put into 3 categories, in addition to the existing habitat.

    1 - Advanced. Habitats where there is clear evidence of funding/a sound business case, of likely significant progress over the next few years and of a launch timetable over the next 5-6 years.
    2 - Developed. Habitats which have been proposed and are under development, though with less evidence of funding being secured and more likely over the next 6-10 years
    3 - Emerging. More speculative, high level proposals, probably over a longer-term timescale but some with potential to expedite.

    Not sure if there is a rigorous definition of 'space habitat' but think it should only include space stations specifically deigned for human habitation. This would include any commercial stations which may not be inhabited permanently so abke to function robotically but with human presence periodically.

    Below is a very quick effort to identify those I immediately know. It isn't (yet) comprehensive. So do share evidence for missing projects or to show some are in the wrong category. The order in each category is random.

    Existing.
    - International Space Station.

    Advanced.
    - China Space Station (see separate thread).
    - Axiom Space (with Boeing and others) linked to ISS initially,
    - Lunar Gateway (see Lunar Gateway Outpost thread).

    Developed.
    - Bigelow Aerospace (see Launch Windows's link above. This and some other projects seem to have been affected by Covid-19 - so should it be 'Emerging'?).
    - Sierra Nevada Corp (see post 107 above).
    - Other spin offs from ISS with NASA Commercial LEO Destinations program support.
    ○ Eg Nanoracks (Nanoracks bishop commercial-airlock spacex international space station satellite deployment)

    Emerging
    - Russian Orbital Service Station (though it has been suggested that a decision on whether it will be habitable has not yet been made?).
    - Blue Origin (https://www.cnbc.com/2020/09/23/jeff...developer.html)
    - Space X Starship (Anything specific from SpaceX? It has been suggested that a Starship in orbit could act as a space station).
    - Any other government proposals? Eg ESA, Japan, India.
    - Any other commercial proposal? Companies listed in the article linked in post 109 above as registered for the NASA CLD briefing and not mentioned so far include:
    ○ Airbus U.S., Collins Aerospace, Firefly Aerospace, General Dynamics, ispace, Lockheed Martin, Moog, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Redwire Space, RUAG space, Virgin (Galactic and Orbit), Voyager Space Holdings, and York Space Systems. So maybe some of them would want to lead a project.

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